The Victorian government is due to finalise a circular economy policy by 2020 - a series of actions to reduce how much waste goes to landfill.
Meanwhile, Ballarat is working on its own sustainable vision.
Around 30 of Ballarat's business minds and entrepreneurs came together at the Ballarat Tech School on Monday to consider how our region can adopt a waste-conscious way of living.
Groups of participants had one hour to brainstorm ideas and pitch a visionary solution to utilise waste streams and give materials a second life at the Regional Design Sprint.
They were also asked to pitch a 'quick hit' solution for how the Ballarat Foundation could serve food sustainably and cheaply for its rescued food dinner in May.
Runway Ballarat director stakeholder relations Janelle Ryan, one of the facilitators of the event, said collaboration between business, industry, start ups, government and organisations could have great regional impact.
"It is that whole a 'rising tide raises all ships' idea. If we are focused on personal agenda all the time the bigger picture issues won't be solved and that will impact us individually in the long run," she said.
One group suggested measuring when Ballarat will run out of resources and showing the countdown on a public clock to instigate residents to make personal change to reduce waste.
Another group suggested council implement a digital reader on rubbish bins that reported back to residents the type of waste collected to council understand waste habits in different areas and for residents to have immediate feedback on how they could cut back their waste.
For business minds to collaborate is the perfect approach to solve a real world problem.Melinda Prendergast, Gekko Systems
Others pitched improved waste separation in the construction sector where materials could be saved for re-use, and implementing manufacturing hubs to create new products from waste in each community.
Melinda Prendergast from Gekko Systems said waste was a 'genuine problem' that needed to be solved 'sooner rather than later' in Ballarat'.
"For business minds to collaborate is the perfect approach to solve a real world problem," she said.
Grampians Central West Waste and Resource Recovery group chief executive La Vergne Lehmann said it was encouraging to hear all groups to recognise waste was a problem we could not outsource.
She described it as a sense of empowerment to develop solutions locally.
"I think people now see there are lots of opportunities around the waste issue, particularly if we frame it not as waste but as a resource we can create new products with," she said.
To solve the Ballarat Foundation's issue of serving food, suggestions were made for diners to bring their own plate from home and share its story, collect their waste like used aluminium foil or an empty juice carton to hold their food and drink, or use banana leaves instead of plates.